Dads and baby massage
Studies now show that baby massage bonds fathers and newborn babies. Recent surveys show that fathers who massage their babies establish warm, positive relationships that continue as the child grows.
Whilst we are all aware of the benefits of a mother's touch through massage new research now states that a father's touch is just as important and equally essential to a baby's wellbeing and health.
Tiffany Field PHD, director of Touch Research Institute at the University of Miami School of Medicine and co-author of a survey on father-infant massage, has shown that father's who used massage techniques with their babies experienced improved self-esteem as a parent due to the increased involvement with their newborns. Babies meanwhile greeted their fathers with more eye-contact, smiling, vocalising and reaching responses.
Occasionally because of the natural and immediate bond formed between mother and baby, a father can feel a little left out and wonder what his role is with his newborn. Baby massage is a positive way to give fathers more purpose and a place in their baby's lives.
"Fathers who learn how to soothe their babies notice that their own stress levels come down. Together they experience the calming power of touch and build a lifelong attachment." Tiffany Field
And of course, a father's involvement through baby massage can assist in giving a much needed break to Mum!
"It takes a tough man to make a tender father." Tim Barrus
"This has been great. I was able to spend some quality time with my daughter."
"This has been an experience. I was a bit worried and didn't know what to expect, but it's been amazing and great fun. We are planning to keep in contact [myself and the other fathers] and meet up regularly."
"My wife booked the baby massage and I didn't really want to go but I felt that I should. Now I'm so glad that I did."
"We've had fun and I'll miss the class."
"I now feel I can do just as good a job as my partner when the baby cries."
"I really feel that all dads should go to baby massage. It gives you something to do with the baby, and when he smiles at me I know it's our special little moment."